by Steven Ertelt
November 30, 2007
Overland Park, KS (LifeNews.com) — Now that the Kansas Supreme Court has said a grand jury probe into late-term abortion practitioner George Tiller can move forward, officials who run the Planned Parenthood abortion business near Kansas City say they won’t ask the state’s high court to block an investigation of its facility.
Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri had planned to appeal the decision a local judge in Johnson County made against dismissing a citizen-called grand jury probe.
Judge Kevin Moriarty rejected Planned Parenthood’s argument that the grand jury is nothing more than pro-life advocates harassing the abortion business.
"The court believes it simply does not have jurisdiction to do anything but to allow the grand jury to proceed," he wrote.
The abortion business said it was considering appealing that decision but said Friday it will not. Planned Parenthood’s lawyer Bob Eye said he would expect the Kansas Supreme Court to issue a similar decision as in the Tiller case.
"We are celebrating these victories today and are looking forward to seeing justice done, both in Sedgwick and Johnson Counties, through the grand jury process," Operation Rescue president Troy Newman told LifeNews.com.
"Abortionists are not above the law, even though they have been acting that way in Kansas for years," he added.
Johnson County District Attorney Phill Kline filed over 100 criminal charges against the abortion center last month.
The 107 counts include 23 felonies and 84 misdemeanors and they include 29 misdemeanor counts of doing illegal late-term abortions.
However, because they say politics have trumped the state’s ability to hold violators of the state’s abortion laws accountable, pro-life advocates called for the grand jury for further investigation.
In a previous statement to LifeNews.com, a coalition of pro-life groups behind the grand jury probe said Planned Parenthood President and CEO Peter Brownlie is lying to the media and public about what’s going on at his abortion business.
On October 17, he told the Associated Press that his abortion center doesn’t perform any abortions past the 22nd week of pregnancy.
However, Planned Parenthood’s web site indicates that "Our primary service is providing abortion services from 4 to 23 weeks gestation, based on the patient’s last menstrual period (LMP)."
It further states that the cost for abortions between 22.0 weeks and 23.4 weeks is $2,185.
"If Planned Parenthood isn’t doing abortion past 22 weeks, why do they say they do on their website, and even list the cost for the abortions Brownlie says do not take place?" Newman told LifeNews.com.
The petition asks the grand jury to look into seven allegations including illegal abortions, failing to report suspected child sexual abuse, providing false information, illegal trafficking in fetal tissue, and failure to comply with the 24-hour waiting period and parental consent requirements of Kansas law.